Candidates for Floyd County sheriff will answer questions on dealing with mental illness in a virtual forum that will be hosted by the local chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness on Tuesday at 6 p.m.

The forum will be livestreamed on the NAMI Rome, GA Facebook page using the meeting platform Zoom. The meeting will be moderated by a member of NAMI, according to chapter president Jim Moore.

The moderator will be asking the candidates Tom Caldwell, Ronnie Kilgo and Dave Roberson questions concerning mental illness in the county and how they will collaborate with other local organizations and law enforcement agencies to help those with mental illness in the area.

People who watch the forum can ask questions of the candidates in the comments section, but the candidates won’t be able to answer them until after the forum finishes.

The forum had originally been scheduled for a NAMI meeting in April, but because of state shelter in place orders, the organization had to adapt the forum to a virtual format.

The person elected sheriff will be overseeing the new Floyd County Jail medical and mental health wing. Construction began earlier this spring on the nearly $6 million project funded through the 2017 special purpose local option sales tax.

The medical wing will include around 20 to 30 mental health beds and will also help treat inmates who experience drug addiction, as well as those with mental illness.

The wing will host programs to help treat the inmates, such as group therapy and life classes, such as financial planning and drug awareness.

The unit is expected to be finished by December 2021, according to Floyd County Sheriff’s Office Maj. Bob Sapp.

Recommended for you